Marfa Lights Still in the News

According to the blog Modern Pterosaur, in the post “Marfa Lights up in the Houston Chronicle,” the staff writer could have done better with a recent newspaper article about the Texas Marfa Lights.

The article was elicited by a press release by Jonathan Whitcomb, part of a national promotion for his new book, the second edition of Live Pterosaurs in America. The Houston Chronicle gave no details about that press release, giving no quotations from it. It mentioned two scientists, James Bunnell and Karl Stephan, both of whom seem to have dismissed the possibility of modern pterosaurs. Neither Bunnel nor Stephan is a biologist.

I think that both the original Marfa Lights press release and the Houston Chronicle article need to be read by the reader who would be well informed in this matter. I recomment chronological order: first read the press release and then the Houston Chronicle article. But neither the blog post nor the press release nor the newspaper article mentions an important name: Peter Beach, a biologist who has taught biology at the college level. We need to pay attention to his experience with flying lights and a strange flying creature seen over the Yakima River in Washington state. From the second edition of the book Live Pterosaurs in America, we read the words of this biologist:

At first I thought I was just seeing shooting stars, but they were all parallel to the river and close to the horizon. Next I noticed that when the cloud cover came in, I could still see the flashes. They were under the cloud cover. Whatever they are, I suggest that they are at least unknown to science, night flying, bioluminescent, flying creatures about the size of an eagle or big hawk. . . . [Professor Beach later had a close sighting of a strange flying creaturel] The shape of the flying animal I saw was 3-4 ft. wingspan, 2-3 ft. long, with a bat-like wing. The neck/head was obvious but only in silhouette.

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